Bluffing In Poker — The Do’s & Don’ts

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Bluffing in poker is an integral part of the game and certainly makes it more fun. However, there are certain bluffing do’s and don’ts that many players forget and go overboard with bluffing. If you don’t know how to bluff in poker, then this article is for you! Poker bluffing is a skill, which if not wielded perfectly, can backfire seriously. In your journey to learn poker and become a master, bluffing is a skill you should sharpen a lot. So, here are some bluffing do’s and don’ts that you should know while bluffing in poker.

Top 8 do’s and don’ts while Bluffing in Poker

1. Do understand The concept Of Bluffing In Poker

Before you start executing bluffs left and right, make sure you understand what bluffing actually is and why do you want to execute it. Some players execute bluffs with the worst cards in such a way that all other players fold their cards. On the other hand, some players semi-bluff with good cards that have the potential to win even if it goes to a showdown. Therefore, make sure your end goals are clear before putting in the first chip for a bluff.

2. Don’t bluff too much!

One of the worst poker mistakes players make is bluffing too much. Bluffing in poker should be the only way out when you have a terrible hand. Most proficient players only play 25-30% of their hands while folding the rest. Therefore, you don’t have to bluff every time you get a bad hand. If you bluff too much, your opponents will catch on, and you will start losing your bluff edge over them.

3. Do Always watch out for bluffs

You are not the only player on the table, and you are not the only one who can bluff. Therefore, observe all your opponents’ moves and deduce when they are bluffing through various poker tells. If you want to know more, here are 5 Amazing Tips For Your Bluff Catching Strategy.

4. Don’t bet large sums at once

In a general poker bluff, the objective is to make all other players believe that you are holding a dream hand that will easily beat them. Many players, however, think if they go all-in in a bluff, the opponents will indeed fold. But the story is different altogether. If you try this strategy against good poker players, they will surely call you if they, too, are holding a good pair of cards. Moreover, betting all-in instantly is known as a desperate cry for help on many tables. So, instead of betting everything at once, make sure you systematically increase the pot and then put the hammer down at the end, so players fold.

5. Do pay attention to your position

The biggest mistakes that beginners make is not understanding the importance of position. If you are among the first players to or are seated in an ‘early’ position then you are at a disadvantage because you have no idea what cards the players after you are holding. Similarly, if you are seated at a ‘late’ position or if you are the last player to act then you can save yourself some money by not getting involved in the bet at all. Remember that position matters throughout the game. 

6. Do bet and raise a lot 

Whenever you play a hand, you should always play it strong. If your hand is not good enough to be re-raised with, then it is not good enough for a call either. Betting and raising puts more money in the pot but also increases your probability of winning the pot  when all your opponents make a fold. Let your opponents decide whether your hands are good enough to be played against. 

7. Don’t get fancy always 

When you are a beginner you should consider keeping your game simple. What we mean is that if you have a good hand, you should bet and raise it. If you have a mediocre or a bad hand then you should make a fold. If you are playing on a table with lower limits, then you don’t really need to get fancy to make a win. In fact, at low stakes tables, your opponents might not even be good enough to put up a game. 

8. Don’t limit yourself to just one poker variant

The more poker games you play, the more you develop other skill-sets that will help improve your overall Poker strategy. You should try to spend as much time as you can across all poker tables. This will also help you avoid boredom and give you the best of the poker experience possible. 

Final Thoughts

Bluffing in poker is a skill like no other, and one can only hone it by playing regularly with full attention and alertness. Once you start understanding how to bluff in poker, you will be able to catch bluffs easily too. Therefore, keep practising, keep playing, and keep getting better!

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